FEBRUARY 13: Leaders of Left parties and JD(U) today met Home Minister Rajnath Singh here demanding the release of JNU students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar who was arrested on sedition charge in connection with an event organised on the campus against the hanging of Afzal Guru.
“We met the Home Minister and apprised him about the tense atmosphere in JNU at present. Delhi Police has released a list of 20 students in connection with the event, which also includes D Raja’s daughter, but we are asking are they seen in the video shouting slogans?,” CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury told reporters after the meeting.
“They were present because they are members of students union or groups but that does not mean they were involved in it. We have demanded that Kanhaiya be released and the Home Minister has assured us that no action will be taken against any innocent student,” he added.
Yechury, who was joined by CPI National Secretary D Raja and JD(U) spokesperson K C Tygai, alleged, “the new Vice Chancellor is acting on the instructions of the government and allowed the police to go ahead with a crackdown. This is happening across all universities that VCs are being removed and the government is appointing persons who are then acting on their instructions.”
“This is a very serious matter and the way all students are being branded anti-national, we have raised all the issues with Rajnath Singh,” he added.
Yechury had yesterday attacked the Centre saying it is reducing India to an “Emergency State” after the police conducted “indiscriminate” raids at hostels in the varsity campus allegedly targeting members of Left-backed students bodies.
Kanhaiya, member of CPI’s student wing All India Student Federation (AISF) was yesterday arrested in connection with a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy over holding of an event at the prestigious institute against hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, sparking widespread outrage among students and non-BJP political parties.
The Left leaders also questioned the “authenticity” of the video tape showing anti-national slogans being raised by a group of persons.
“Police has released a list of 20 students, including daughter of D Raja, who have been slapped with sedition charges without enquiry,” Yechuri said.
Over charges against his daughter D Raja said, “who can question my or my daughter’s integrity? Who can accuse us of anti-national, anti-constitutional activities, are they mad?”
Further, he raised questions over the video showing students raising anti-national slogans saying “who are those people, whether they are from JNU or outside, nobody knows. The point is that nobody can accuse AISF or SFI or for that matter Left organisations of anti-national activities.”
He said that Singh was told about the video “clippings” and he assured them that he will talk to the police commissioner about it.